I am so excited to have Juli Hesse of Mostly Caffeinated with us today sharing about marriage after having a baby! I can’t wait to see my husband as a father and I am soaking up every bit of her wisdom on how life will change with our baby. Which stage of life are you in? Check out what Juli has to say, then jump over to her blog. I know you will love it!
It is no secret that “baby changes your marriage.” It’s rare to find an explanation of what that actually means, and I love to be candid with mommas about the truths of postpartum and parenting.
There are many, many positives for your marriage. You will fall in love all over again as you see a new side of your spouse – him or her as a parent. (There’s a reason there are so many cute photos of dads and babies on social media!) You will find new depths of your own love and patience which will spill over into your marriage. You will go on a lifetime of family adventures, starting with birth.
But also, a baby means starting completely over.
Yup, from the beginning. It’s like being newly married and re-navigating every step you’ve taken in your relationship.
You thought you had all your in-law issues worked out – and then they turn into grandparent issues. You spent your childless years working on things like whose meatloaf was better, or whose advice to take on financial matters, or whether to seek someone’s parents’ help or not. Just when you start solving all of those riddles, and now it’s who gets invited to visit in the hospital, who gets to celebrate which holiday, duplicates of every photo and craft project. Your side spoils the kids with toys. His side pops over unannounced to visit the kids.
You thought you were well on your way to having all of your intimacy issues worked out – and then you have a baby. Postpartum is an unbelievably complex time. You’re now navigating together a completely different level of desire, availability, tiredness, and physical trauma. It may take months before a new mom “feels like” getting back into a regular sex life. It is probably only days before a new dad feels the same. You’ve never gotten worse sleep in your life. Your body has never belonged to someone else before. Your anatomy has literally changed. It’s whole new waters in the bedroom.
You have unlimited new topics of conversation, but they’re all about the baby. Just in case you were starting to run out of conversation, never fear! You now have a whole new pool of discussion points for dinnertime – it’s just that they’re entirely about your adorable offspring and his or her bodily functions.
You thought you knew each other’s quirks and irritating habits, but you’re going to find new ones. Sure, you knew your partner leaves dirty socks around, or chews loudly, or turns the A/C way up for no reason. But did you know they tend to sing Pearl Jam songs as lullabies? Did you know they can’t choose baby clothes that match? Did you know they’re overprotective? Or overly adventurous? Did you know they always meant to name a child a certain name, or always wanted to take their kids to a certain vacation spot, or always thought you’d cosleep? Did you know these things about yourself? You’re going to suddenly be inundated with tons of new character traits in both yourself and your spouse, because suddenly you’re parents.
And just like a new marriage, it is equal parts extremely exciting, and hard, hard work. The benefit is you’ve done it all before once, and you can do it again! Keep it in perspective – you’re not going to navigate perfectly smoothly. There will be arguments, tears, frustration, miscommunication; the works. If you can recognize it as a season of life that will eventually work itself out, and keep all your limbs inside the vehicle, your child will easily be the best blessing that’s ever happened to you and your marriage. Best of luck!